66th PGA Merchandise Show celebrates national PGA REACH programs impacting lives of youth, military and diverse populations
PALM BEACH GARDENS, FLA. — Besides debuting the latest in golf equipment, technology and apparel, the 66th PGA Merchandise Show will highlight PGA REACH, the 501(c)(3) charitable foundation of the PGA of America.
Designated PGA REACH events set for January 23-24 at the PGA Merchandise Show will turn the spotlight on the impact made in its three areas of focus: PGA Jr. League (youth), PGA HOPE—Helping Our Patriots Everywhere (military) and PGA WORKS Fellowship (inclusion).
“We are honored to share the impact of the PGA Member through PGA REACH at the Merchandise Show,” said Ryan Cannon, senior director of PGA REACH. “At this time last year, we introduced the first two PGA WORKS Fellows. Today, that number is up to 12. Nine of those Fellows will share their valuable insights on a panel on the Forum Stage, along with newly appointed PGA REACH intern and Florida State football kicking great Roberto Aguayo. PGA HOPE Veterans have the highest honor to participate in the Opening Ceremonies, and PGA Jr. League will begin the process of building towards another landmark year for participation.”
Wednesday, Jan. 23: PGA HOPE Veterans to Open the 2019 PGA Merchandise Show
PGA HOPE is the flagship military program of PGA REACH and introduces golf to veterans with disabilities to enhance their physical, mental, social and emotional well-being. Led by PGA Professionals, PGA HOPE helped more than 2,000 Veterans assimilate back into their communities through golf’s social interaction, in 2018.
PGA HOPE Veterans will join PGA of America President Suzy Whaley, PGA/LPGA and CEO Seth Waugh in a special Opening Ceremony to officially kick off the 66th Annual PGA Merchandise Show.
Location: Central Lobby
Time: Opening Ceremonies will begin at 8:15 a.m.
Special guests in attendance will include:
- Ken Juhn, PGA, Head Golf Professional at Terrace Hill Golf Club and 2018 National Patriot Award Recipient
- Judy Alvarez, PGA/LPGA, PGA HOPE Lead National Trainer, Member of Metropolitan PGA Section
- Joseph Garrido, PGA HOPE Graduate, Retired Corporal in the United States Marine Corps Infantry
- Chris Nowak, PGA HOPE Military and Veteran Liaison, Retired Corporal in the United States Marine Corps
Thursday, Jan. 24: PGA WORKS Fellowship Panel
PGA WORKS Fellowship is the flagship inclusion program of PGA REACH. The PGA WORKS Fellowship aspires to be the most valuable entry-level employment opportunity for individuals from diverse backgrounds to garner experience in the golf industry. Launched in 2017, the PGA WORKS Fellowship now hosts 12 Fellows across the country in the following PGA Sections: Carolinas, Connecticut, Gateway, Metropolitan, Michigan, Middle Atlantic, New Jersey, Northern Ohio, Southern Ohio, Western New York, Indiana and South Florida. The goal is to have Fellows in all 41 PGA Sections.
Panel Presentation—The Millennial Perspective: Attracting a Diverse Workforce
In celebration of the PGA WORKS Fellowship program’s growth in 2018, nine of the 12 PGA WORKS Fellows will share their unique perspectives on what they’ve learned from their Fellowships, including what matters most to them in their careers and what they’re seeking from prospective employers and in company cultures. PGA WORKS National Program Specialist Rachel Melendez-Mabee will moderate the multigenerational and diverse panel.
Location: PGA Forum Stage
Time: 9:15 a.m.-10 a.m.
Panelists for this event are:
- Roberto Aguayo, PGA REACH intern
- Sofia Alvarez, Connecticut PGA Section
- Nicole Asbun, Southern Ohio PGA Section
- James Eugene, Metropolitan PGA Section
- Johnathan Johnson, Middle Atlantic PGA Section
- Hannah Marcusse, Michigan PGA Section
- Fernando Molina, Gateway PGA Section
- Brooke Morgan, Northern Ohio PGA Section
- Madison Temple, South Florida PGA Section
- Telvin Walker, Carolinas PGA Section
PGA Jr. League—2019 Season Registration Opens Jan. 30
PGA Jr. League is the flagship youth-pillar program of PGA REACH, with the goal of making the program accessible to all interested kids in the United States and around the world. The newest ambassadors named to its celebrity cabinet include Golden State Warriors All-Star and two-time NBA MVP Steph Curry; and Olympic Gold Medalist and FIFA Women’s World Cup Champion Alex Morgan. In 2018, more than 50,000 boys and girls participated on 4,200 PGA Jr. League teams nationwide, led by more than 2,500 PGA and LPGA Professional captains. This growth represents a nearly 20 percent increase in players from 2017, and participation has grown each year since its inception in 2011. Click here to view a chart of PGA Jr. League growth from 2011-18.
For more information about PGA REACH, visit PGAREACH.org. For interviews or information on the PGA REACH events taking place at the PGA Merchandise Show, see the contacts below.